Exmoor Distillery – Success for Somerset distillery, producing award-winning artisan gin

The Project

Exmoor Distillery Ltd is based at Barle Enterprise Centre. The family run
distillery is home to award-winning Northmoor Gin. Having started
trading little more than one year ago, John Smith, has perfected his
artisan gin recipe. He now makes, bottles, sells and distributes
Northmoor Classic Gin, and Northmoor Navy Strength Gin from the
Dulverton base. With ambitious plans to be make rum at the unit by the
end of the year.
The husband and wife team have watched their artisan gin sales take
off. Its unique blend of botanicals has seen over 10,000 bottles sold, and
it is currently stocked in 200 outlets and picking up prestigious awards
and recognition throughout 2019.

The Challenge
John and Nicola had planned to set up the business from an outbuilding
at their own home. What became apparent however, was the space
required for the distilling process, bottling and storage was going to far
exceed their space available at home.

The Solution
Living in Dulverton, the nearby Barle site offered flexible space and more
importantly, capacity to grow the business. With their gin in demand
production has increased. The original 100 litre still has been joined by
one five times bigger. Furthermore, when rum production begins, there
are plans for the unit to also house a 2,000 litre still. John will be
sourcing and fermenting his own molasses, making it a truly authentic
and specific rum production process for the UK market.
Being located off a main road, the distillery doors are open Monday to
Friday 9am-5pm. Passers-by are able to call in and see for themselves
the distillery, chat to John or Nicola and buy direct from the unit.
Such interest from local visitors and gin fans has led to plans to further
adapt the unit. Direct gin sales is proving popular and the unit’s space
will be utilised to include a defined entrance with mocked up bar area,
and better defined shop front, providing a home for gin tasting sessions.
From an empty shell the unit now provides a busy thriving business
space, with a second unit being used for storage to facilitate the growing
production line.

Speaking about the Enterprise Centre John has no hesitation in
recommending the site: “The flexibility of the unit has been able to match
the business growth, and additional space required for running the
business. Working next to like-minded business owners we’ve been able
to form working relationships that have had a real benefit to the
business.”

Benefits
- Flexible business space to support business growth
- Space to expand
- Part of local business community


The Future
The response to Northmoor Gin has seen the business grow far quicker
than John had expected: “We have taken on additional people to help
support growing the business, and now have people working on
marketing, PR and social media along with a Business Development
Manager.”
Wholesale sales have grown to make up around 50% of sales to date,
and John is now looking at distribution partners as they reach out to
outlets further afield than the South West.
John is passionate about making authentic products and the exciting
plans to launch a rum shortly will further add to the portfolio of products
from the South West distillery based at Barle.

To find out more about Exmoor Distillery visit:
https://www.exmoordistillery.co.uk/

Exmoor Distillery Ltd, Unit 5, Barle Enterprise Centre, Dulverton
Exmoor, Somerset. TA22 9BF

Exmoor Distillery – Success for Somerset distillery, producing award-winning artisan gin
“We have taken on additional people to help support growing the business, and now have people working on marketing, PR and social media along with a Business Development Manager.”
—John Smith